ESL | GED | Latino Leadership InstituteSpanish Literacy | Citizenship | Conversational Spanish Class

English as a Second Language

The Center offers five levels of English language proficiency with cultural awareness.

Students are given an assessment for placement in the level that best fits their needs. Evening ESL classes run September through May from 6:30 pm to 8:30 pm on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Morning ESL classes through our Family Literacy Program are from 10 am to 12 pm on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Each semester is $40, including the book. An eight week summer course is also available with limited levels.

  • Website Resources
  • Evening Classes: Registration February 27, 2018: 5:30pm. Classes are Tuesdays/Thursdays 6:30-8:3opm.
  • Morning Classes: Registration March 27, 2018: 9-10:30am. Classes are Tuesday/Thursdays 10am-12pm.

Family at GED graduation

Family at GED graduation

General Educational Development (GED)

General Educational Development (GED) preparation classes in Spanish are offered in 4 different subjects: Math (Levels 100, 200 & 300), Reading and Writing, Social Studies and Science. Classes are twice a week from 6 pm to 9 pm for 12 weeks. Math is offered year-round whereas the other subjects are offered once a year. Open computer laboratory hours allow GED students to practice taking the computer-based test. When students gain enough confidence after passing their class, they are encouraged to register to take the test at a local testing site. Semester is $90 with a book or $60 without.

  • Website Resources
  • Next registration for Math or Social Studies is April 23 & 25, 2018 5:30-7pm. $90 includes book.
  • Classes are in Spanish, Mondays/Wednesdays 6-9pm.

Latino Leadership Institute

The third cohort of the Latino Leadership Institute celebrated their achievements and received a Certificate in Latino Leadership from the School of Professional and Continuing Studies of the University of Richmond on September 28, 2016. Graduates successfully completed a sixty plus hour bilingual program of studies including leadership qualities found in the Latino culture, history and worldview and the issues facing Latino communities in the USA, Virginia and Metro-Richmond area. Additionally, they developed bi-lingual speaking and writing skills, planning skills, administering and growing a micro-business skills and an understanding of the power and political realities of Virginia.

The graduates expressed their reasons for participating in different ways:

“I graduated from Glenn Allen High School in 2013 and am proud to be a DREAMER. My DREAM is to be a lawyer.”

“I’m a member of the Immigration Reform Institute of Casa Virginia. When my immigration status is fixed, I want to begin studying to be a registered nurse so that I can serve the Latino community as a nurse.”

  • The fifth cohort will begin with an Open House on September 6, 2017. The Richmond cohort meets at Sacred Heart Center Wednesdays at 7pm.
  • Persons interested in more information should contact Father Jack Podsiadlo, SJ at 917-842-3871

latino leadership institute

Spanish Literacy

Sacred Heart Center offers basic literacy, primary and secondary school education through an innovative Spanish education program, Plaza Comunitaria, provided through a partnership with the Mexican Consulate. The goal is to increase literacy and fill education gaps among the Spanish and Mixteco speaking population. Students are paired with tutors and can advance at their own pace through the modules. Students are able to earn their primary and secondary school certificate from Mexico, regardless of their country of origin. This class is used as a primer class for the GED program.

Group classes are offered Tuesdays and Thursdays from 10am-12pm or 6:30-8:30pm. One-on-one tutoring usually takes place on Sundays at Sacred Heart Center. Broad Rock Library has partnered with Sacred Heart Center to offer their space on Saturday for Plaza Comunitaria classes as well. Individuals who have never been to school or didn’t finish 8th grade would benefit from this opportunity. We are looking for Spanish-speaking volunteers for our group classes. Email if you are interested in becoming a Spanish literacy tutor.

  • Registration is either during English as a Second Language registration or on an ongoing basis.


Citizenship class helps permanent residents prepare for the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) citizenship examination. The Citizenship Exam has 4 parts: the Civics test, the speaking test, the reading test, and the writing test. The class is conducted in English and addresses the content of the exam itself as well as the language skills necessary for the interview. The class runs for 10 weeks. Tutoring services are made available for those who finish the class and need to practice the personal and moral conduct questions of the interview. You must be a Permanent Resident to enroll in Citizenship class. Classes are Mondays and Wednesdays 10am-12pm or 6-8pm.

  • Next registration is April 30, 2018 from 5:30-7pm or May 2, 2018 from 10-11:30am. The cost is $40

Conversational Spanish Class

Register for Conversational Spanish classes here. Spanish classes for high-beginners to intermediate learners. 8 weeks, twice a week with a native speaker. February 5 – April 4, 2018, $350. For more information and to register, click here.